The Match has always been exciting to watch and the seventh edition features four of the best to ever play the game.
Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy team up to face Jordan Spieth and Justin Thomas over 12 holes at Pelican Golf Club in Belleair, Fla. It’s a shortened format, but given Woods’ walking issues, that’s a good thing.
Golf odds can’t split them at -120, but we can be sure of plenty of banter between the teams on the links this Saturday.
Woods, McIlroy Mix Well
We have loved seeing Woods and McIlroy gel together over the last few years.
It looked like McIlroy was chasing down Woods’ impressive major record, but now that’s looking highly unlikely. They have become good friends and that could result in good play on the course.
Woods’ son, Charlie, has been getting swing advice from McIlroy, so they’re like a family and that’s why the sportsbook has the Woods/McIlroy pairing at -120. If they weren’t so close, we think bookmakers would have priced them around +130.
Woods pulled out of the Hero World Challenge because he can’t walk that many holes, but he’ll be fine over 12 holes and he said he’s planning on shooting low scores at home.
Woods is opting to avoid surgery for plantar fasciitis.
“You don’t want to go down the surgical route,” Woods told the Golf Channel. “Injections, surgical, or just stretch and relax, and I chose to stretch and relax.”
“Get off your feet, which I have done and continue to do. Also sleep at night with a boot on; try to stretch it out.”
It’s not ideal heading into Match 7 but having world No. 1 McIlroy on your team helps. McIlroy has been playing well and, although without a major since 2014, he has still racked up plenty of PGA Tour and World Tour wins.
Scoop on Free Play from the Locker Room
Best Buds Team Upfd
Spieth and Thomas are a formidable duo, so Woods and McIlroy will be up against it on Saturday.
Thomas comes off a strong finish in the Hero World Challenge, so he’s playing well and the American is one of the more solid golfers on tour.
Spieth hasn’t been playing as well, but that doesn’t always matter in his format. It’s about how well you play with your teammate and it doesn’t get much better than Spieth and Thomas.
Spieth showed his class in the 2022 President’s Cup and he lives for this type of golf. Although Match 7 is only an exhibition between mates, they’ll still want to win and there are bragging rights on the line.
Golf betting markets have the Spieth/Thomas team at -120, but we expect those odds to firm. Bettors should take note of their recent success playing as a duo and there are injury concerns for Woods, so it’s not ideal conditions for the Woods/McIlroy pairing.
We’re going with Spieth and Thomas to win. They play beautifully as a pair and bettors get excellent value. Also, check Magical Kenya open.